Plumbers install, repair and maintain the water supply, waste water treatment, drainage and gas systems in homes, commercial and industrial buildings. Plumbers assemble, install and repair pipes, fittings, and fixtures of heating, water and drainage systems according to specifications and plumbing codes. Plumbers also install sanitary facilities such as lavatories, toilets, tubs, bathroom fixtures, showers, kitchen fixtures, drinking fountains, and laundry equipment.
Plumbing work can be indoors or outdoors in existing and newly constructed buildings, in various weather conditions and around noise, dirt and mud. The work requires physical strength and stamina with prolonged standing, lifting heavy pipes and equipment, and working in cramped, awkward or uncomfortable positions. Training in safety practices prevents the risk of dangers with falls from ladders, cuts from sharp tools and burns from hot pipes or soldering equipment.
Topics include plumbing code, repair and service, materials, installation of fixtures and appliances, system design, trade math, safety, science, blueprint reading and isometric drawing.
Term of Training: Five years of not less than 8,000 hours
On-the-Job Training: Minimum of 7,500 hours
Paid Related Training: 572 hours of paid related instruction. Classes are scheduled one full day, eight hours, every two weeks during the school year. Apprentices are paid to attend these classes at the same rate of pay as hours worked on the job. Attendance is mandatory.
Night School Classes: Apprentices are required to attend 260 hours of night school as designated by the Committee, on their own time.
Wages: Apprentices are paid a percentage of the journeymen's base wage rate as established annually by the State of Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development. The apprentice's wage is a percentage of the skilled rate and is divided into a pay progression. The wage at each level of the progression is a designated percentage of the skilled wage rate. Wage advances are usually given annually. Advances are based on the completion of a designated number of academic and work hours.
Completion: Upon completion of work and school requirements, the apprentice plumber is eligible to apply to write the State of Wisconsin journeyman plumbing exam.
Applications are for the following Eau Claire Area counties: Barron, Chippewa, Clark, Dunn, Eau Claire, Pepin, Price, Rusk, Taylor and the northern half of Buffalo, Jackson and Trempealeau.
Apprentice Application Requirements:
Must be a high school graduate or have a GED/HSED.
Must have a valid driver's license or reliable transportation.
Must be physically able to perform trade work.
Must take the TABE or Accuplacer Placement Test.
Must take the TABE A, Parts 2 and 3, which includes reading, math computations, and applied math. Applicants must score a minimum of 11.4 grade equivalent on each section of the test.